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The role of optimal threats in auction design

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  • Figueroa, Nicolás
  • Skreta, Vasiliki

Abstract

This paper studies revenue-maximizing auctions when buyers' outside options depend on their private information and are endogenously chosen by the seller. We show that the revenue-maximizing assignment of the object can depend crucially on the outside options that the seller can choose as threats. Depending on the shape of outside options, sometimes an optimal mechanism allocates the object in an ex-post efficient way, and, other times, buyers obtain the object more often than is efficient.

Suggested Citation

  • Figueroa, Nicolás & Skreta, Vasiliki, 2009. "The role of optimal threats in auction design," Journal of Economic Theory, Elsevier, vol. 144(2), pages 884-897, March.
  • Handle: RePEc:eee:jetheo:v:144:y:2009:i:2:p:884-897
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    Cited by:

    1. Frédéric Koessler & Ariane Lambert-Mogiliansky, 2012. "Optimal Extortion and Political Risk Insurance," PSE Working Papers halshs-00672963, HAL.
    2. Serkan Kucuksenel, 2012. "Interim efficient auctions with interdependent valuations," Journal of Economics, Springer, vol. 106(1), pages 83-93, May.
    3. Koessler, Frédéric & Lambert-Mogiliansky, Ariane, 2014. "Extortion and political-risk insurance," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 120(C), pages 144-156.
    4. Brocas, Isabelle, 2014. "Countervailing incentives in allocation mechanisms with type-dependent externalities," Journal of Mathematical Economics, Elsevier, vol. 50(C), pages 22-33.
    5. Isabelle Brocas, 2013. "Optimal allocation mechanisms with type-dependent negative externalities," Theory and Decision, Springer, vol. 75(3), pages 359-387, September.
    6. Madhav Aney, 2015. "Inefficiency in the shadow of unobservable reservation payoffs," Social Choice and Welfare, Springer;The Society for Social Choice and Welfare, vol. 44(4), pages 833-859, April.
    7. Frank Stähler, 2014. "Partial ownership and cross-border mergers," Journal of Economics, Springer, vol. 111(3), pages 209-237, April.
    8. Chen, Bo & Potipiti, Tanapong, 2010. "Optimal selling mechanisms with countervailing positive externalities and an application to tradable retaliation in the WTO," Journal of Mathematical Economics, Elsevier, vol. 46(5), pages 825-843, September.

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